Audio Recording for your Listening Pleasure
Bill was 48, I was 36. He took his own life and left me& this Earth 25 years ago today.
A Southern Gentlemen from Albany Georgia, Bill was recognized by his Princeton classmates as being in a league of his own. Gifted (and burdened) with more brains than most, he was recruited by our government and deemed a National Treasure.
Bill either captured your heart or hammered your ego. I was clearly the former. For sure he challenged every single person he came in contact with throughout his entire life.
Inseparable for over 7 years, Bill was not only my partner and lover but also my teacher, mentor, friend, and confidant.
I have passed his “selected death day” 25 times since October 30th, 1991. Each time my reactions and feelings are different. Sometimes he’s barely a bleep on my radar. Other times I attribute a moment of silence just to him. And then, there are those years when I want to bathe myself in his memory. This is that kind of year.
It isn’t quite grief (After all, he’s been gone for a quarter of a century.) but, a fuller sense of his presence. My references about him poking the back of my right shoulder get more consistent. I can almost feel his fingers. My memory includes more detail. My conversation feels closer to actually hearing him respond.
It even sounds strange to me. But with certainty, I know he is steering the ride I am on. With what seems like passion, it feels as though he needs me to listen. I am. I have always heard his message, alive or dead. For me, like for everyone else, the challenge was always deciphering his meaning.
“Don’t forget your sexuality.”
Today, 25 years later it feels like I’ve got a better grasp of the points he was making. Perhaps because I’m older, things he said back then make much more sense today. Like “I love you for your potential.”and “I know you’ll make a great Mom.” and “Don’t forget your sexuality.”
He is still to this day one of the most profound and worthwhile individuals I have ever known. Perhaps it’s his intellect that allows him to continue guiding me from the other side… I still hear him so clearly and want to follow his lead. Even across those unknown borders, I trust him. And he knows it.
Listening carefully, I know he has pressing things to say… He knows what I’m supposed to do and tells me so. Like “It’s time for you to blossom.” and “It’s time for you to give your best to more.” and “It’s time for you to sprint for that finish line with all of your might, all of your body, and all of your soul.” And that’s exactly what I’ll do because I want to live to my potential.
Though on different planes, Bill and I still walk together. I am glad to this day to stroll on that path beside him. Thank you, Bill…